Enlightenment, atheism, reason, and the humanist Left 25

This is a kind of review. But it is more of an argument about ideas that vitally affect the real world.

I am in emphatic agreement with roughly half of what Professor Steven Pinker says in his new book Enlightenment Now: the Case for Reason, Science, Humanism, and Progress*, and in vehement disagreement with the rest of it. Like him, I esteem the Enlightenment most highly; profoundly value science; and certainly want progress in everything that makes us happier and better informed, our lives longer, healthier, less painful, and more enjoyable. Like him, I am an atheist. It is chiefly with his ideas on Humanism that I disagree. Which may seem strange since humanism is atheist. And, certainly, on all his criticisms of religion I am in complete accord. More than that: where small “h” humanism is concerned with humane morals – the imperative to treat our fellow human beings and other sentient beings humanely – the great professor and I could sing in harmony.

“The moral alternative to theism,” he writes, “is humanism.”

But Humanism-the-movement holds principles that I not only do not like, but strongly dislike. They are principles of the Left. And  while he is not uncritical of the Left, Professor Pinker upholds those principles. Humanism, wherever it may be found, is a Leftist ideology. And because the Humanist movement is well-established, widespread, its opinions prominently published, and taught (or preached) where scholars gather, atheism is assumed by many to belong to the Left, inseparably, part and parcel of its essential ideology.

Atheism may be indispensable to the Left, but Leftism is not necessary to atheism.

Atheism as such carries no connotations. No political or ethical ideas logically flow from it. It is simply non-belief in the existence of a divine being. Nothing more. A person’s atheism does not itself make him more humane or less humane.

Steven Pinker implies that it does. Although he states that “atheism is not a moral system … just the absence of supernatural belief”, he also declares that “secularism leads to humanism, turning people away from prayer, doctrine, and ecclesiastical authority and toward practical policies that make them and their fellows better off.”

He reasons along these lines:

“Knowledge of the world is derived by observation, experimentation, and rational analysis.”

Not from holy books. Agreed.

“Humans are an integral part of nature, the result of unguided evolutionary change.”

Agreed.

There being no supernatural moral authority, and as human beings have natural needs –

“Ethical values are derived from human need and interest as tested by experience.”

So far, no cause for quarrel. But he elaborates on this last statement to demonstrate that Humanists do this “deriving” well:

“Humanists ground values in human welfare, shaped by human circumstances, interests and concerns and extended to the global ecosystem …”

There it comes, as if it followed logically from scientific knowledge and humane secularism, one of the main obsessions of the Left: concern for the planet, for which, the Left claims, human beings bear responsibility. The words “man-made global warming” silently intrude themselves; as does the “solution” for it – global governance, by those who know what the human race must do; total communism, the highest principle of the Left; its vision of a whole-world Utopia. Though Steven Pinker himself is not a Utopian, he writes a good deal in this book about the virtues of “globalist” politics. He sees globalism as an enlightened, reasonable, science-based, progressive, humanist creed. To “maximize individual happiness”, he remarks, “progressive cultures” work to “develop global community”. He has much praise for international institutions – including, or even led by, the (actually deeply evil) United Nations. He is confident the UN and other international bodies such as the EU, formed after the end of the Second World War, can help keep the world at peace. In fact, there has not been a single year since 1945 when the world has been without a war or wars.

To the globalist view he opposes the populist view. Not wrong when stated thus. But he does not see the populist view as the one held by 63 million Americans who voted Donald Trump into the presidency of the United States because they wanted more jobs, lower taxes, and secure borders; or that of the British majority who voted to withdraw their country from the undemocratic and corrupt European Union. No. He sees populism as a cult of “romantic heroism”, a longing for “greatness embodied in an individual or a nation”.

He is adamantly against the nation-state. He thinks that those who uphold the idea of the nation-state “ludicrously” envision a “global order” that “should consist of ethnically homogeneous and mutually antagonistic nation-states”. Who has ever expressed such an idea? And he puts “multiculturalism” (the failing experiment of enforcing the co-existence of diverse tribes within a nation’s borders) on an equal footing with “multi-ethnicity” (the melting-pot idea that has worked so splendidly for the United States of America).

To him, nationalism is ineluctably authoritarian and fascist. He sees President Trump – who is in fact unswervingly for individual freedom – as a “charismatic leader” of the dictatorial Mussolini mold. The politics of the Right for Professor Pinker are irredeemably dyed in the wool with Nietzschean anti-morality, “superman” aspirations, and genocidal urgings. Libertarianism is tainted with it too. He writes: “ … Ayn Rand’s celebration of selfishness, her deification of the heroic capitalist, and her disdain for the general welfare had Nietzsche written all over them.”

Interestingly – and restoratively to my esteem for him – he also asserts that certain Marxists and certain Leftist movements are equally, or even more, colored with Nietzsche’s inhumanity: “[Nietzsche] was a key influence on … Jean-Paul Sartre, Jacques Derrida, and Michel Foucault, and a godfather to all the intellectual movements of the 20th century that were hostile to science and objectivity, including Existentialism, Critical Theory, Post-structuralism, Deconstructionism, and Postmodernism.”

Steven Pinker’s humanism, then, is not far to the Left, just “left-of-center”. And most of the humanists I have known (and argued with) would also place themselves on that section of the political spectrum. “[T]he moral and intellectual case for humanism is, I believe, overwhelming …,” he writes.

He concludes (and here he specifically rejects Utopianism):

We will never have a perfect world. And it would be dangerous to seek one. But there is no limit to the betterments we can attain if we continue to apply knowledge to enhance human flourishing. This heroic story … belongs not to any tribe but to all humanity – to any sentient creature with the power of reason and the urge to persist in its being. For it requires only the convictions that life is better than death, health is better than sickness, abundance is better than want, freedom is better than coercion, happiness is better than suffering, and knowledge is better than superstition and ignorance.”

That is the vision of the Decent Thinking Western Man. He believes that all human beings ultimately want the same things; that the good life is defined for all in the same general terms; that all  would agree to the Golden Rule, which has been “rediscovered in hundreds of moral traditions”.

But are those beliefs true? He himself records that there are many who do not value knowledge above ignorance, reason above superstition, freedom above coercion, even life above death. Which is to say, he writes about Islam (in which there is no Golden Rule). He knows Islam has no trace of “Enlightenment humanism”. He declares it an “illiberal” creed, and observes that “[M]any Western intellectuals – who would be appalled if the repression, misogyny, homophobia, and political violence that are common in the Islamic world were found in their own societies even diluted a hundred fold – have become strange apologists when these practices are carried out in the name of Islam.”

He finds one explanation for the double-standard of these intellectuals in their “admirable desire to prevent prejudice against Muslims”. But when it comes to revulsion against ideologists of repression, misogyny, homophobia, and political violence, is it prejudice or is it judgment? He says also that some of the apologetics are “intended to discredit a destructive (and possibly self-fulfilling) narrative that the world is embroiled in a clash of civilizations”. (Or, as I see it, of civilization against barbarism.) I wonder how anyone can look at the drastically changing demographics of Europe, or at least the Western part of it which will surely be under Islamic rule before the century is out, and not notice the clash.

But he does say that “calling out the antihumanistic features of contemporary Islamic belief is in no way Islamophobic”. Being the decent thinking Western man that he is, he is firmly for critical examination of all ideas.

His optimism shines out of the book. He thinks Islam can be reformed, even that a Muslim Enlightenment is possible. He believes there was an earlier age of Islamic Enlightenment, an “Islamic Golden Age” which could serve as a precedent. Well, if one wants to see bright possibilities, Islam may come to prefer science to the assertions of its prophet. It may become humane in its law and stop oppressing women. It may contribute to human progress. But whatever changes may come to Islam in the future, at present it does not value life above death, freedom above coercion, knowledge above superstition. And there is no good reason to believe it ever will.

 

Jillian Becker    April 12, 2018

 

*Enlightenment Now: the Case for Reason, Science, Humanism, and Progress by Steven Pinker, Viking, New York 2018. The quotations in the article come from the last chapter, Humanism.

House Democrats put complete trust in a gang of Pakistani crooks 14

… who exploited them, cheated them, robbed them, mocked them, and seriously endangered them, the government, and the nation.

It’s not fake news. It really happened.

From the Daily Caller, April 1, 2018:

Every one of the 44 House Democrats who hired Pakistan-born IT aides who later allegedly made “unauthorized access” to congressional data appears to have chosen to exempt them from background checks, according to congressional documents.

All of them appear to have waived background checks on Imran Awan and his family members, even though the family of server administrators could collectively read all the emails and files of 1 in 5 House Democrats, and despite background checks being recommended for such positions, according to an inspector general’s report.  But it also includes a loophole allowing them to simply say that another member vouched for them.

No background checks? So what sort of people were the Awans? What could have been found out about them? What reputations did they have?

Among the red flags in Abid’s background were a $1.1 million bankruptcy; six lawsuits against him or a company he owned; and at least three misdemeanor convictions including for DUI and driving on a suspended license, according to Virginia court records. Public court records show that Imran and Abid operated a car dealership, referred to the CIA, that took $100,000 from an Iraqi government official who is a fugitive from U.S. authorities. Numerous members of the family were tied to cryptic LLCs [Limited Liability Companies] such as New Dawn 2001, operated out of Imran’s residence, Virginia corporation records show. Imran was the subject of repeated calls to police by multiple women [complaining of abuse] and had multiple misdemeanor convictions for driving offenses, according to court records.

How did they exploit their position and betray the trust reposed in them?

If a screening had caught those, what officials say happened next might have been averted. The House inspector general reported on Sept. 20, 2016, that shortly before the election members of the group were logging into servers of members they didn’t work for, logging in using congressmen’s personal usernames, uploading data off the House network, and behaving in ways that suggested “nefarious purposes” and that “steps are being taken to conceal their activity”.

A pair of closely-held reports on Imran Awan, his brothers Abid and Jamal, his wife Hina Alvi, and his friend Rao Abbas, said, “the shared employees have not been vetted (e.g. background check).”

Were they highly qualified and thoroughly experienced?

No.

“Shared employees” means they were all hired as part-time, individual employees by individual members, cobbling together $165,000 salaries. Jamal began making that salary at only 20 years old, according to House payroll records; Abid never went to college, his stepmother said; and Rao Abbas’ most recent job experience was being fired from McDonald’s, according to his roommate. (“Whether they had formal training or not, they were trained on the job by Imran,” one of Imran’s lawyers said.)

Who first brought them into the confidence of the House Democrats?

Among the 44 employers, the primary advocate for the suspects has been Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz of Florida, who  … was also chair of the Democratic National Committee when Wikileaks published its emails. (The Wikileaks emails show that DNC aides called Imran when they needed the password to her device.) Since then, she and other Democrats have described cyber breaches in the strongest possible terms, such as “an act of war” and “an assault on our democracy.”

But there is no indication Democrats put those concerns into practice when they entrusted the Pakistani dual citizens with their data, nor when suspicious activity was detected.

Once the crooks had been rumbled, did the Dems who’d employed them at least  take immediate steps to find out how much damage they’d done and repair it as best they could?

Well, Debbie didn’t. She kept Imran in his job.

Police banned the suspects from the network after the IG report, but Wasserman Schultz kept Imran on staff anyway. He was in the building and in possession of a laptop with the username RepDWS months later, according to an April 6, 2017 police report.

Was there no security policy that could have prevented this outrage, or at least discovered it sooner?

The House security policy, HISPOL16, says “House Offices shall… ensure background checks, as defined in this policy, have been conducted on Privileged Users”. It includes quarterly reviews of privileged accounts’ appropriateness. By the time the policy was enacted, some members had dropped the Awans for assorted reasons …

What reasons? None given, except –

… including Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona in early 2015 for what her spokesperson called “incompetence”. 

So they weren’t even competent at the job they were paid to do by the Representatives? Kyrsten Sinema may not have been able to judge that. “Incompetence” was probably just her excuse for dismissing the Awans. The real reason seems to be was that she was afraid of them. So were they all – all  the Democratic Representatives who irresponsibly entrusted their computers to the Awan gang.  

The Daily Caller News Foundation reached out to all 44 members, and none disputed that they had not conducted a background check. Not a single one of the 44 would say which of their colleagues vouched for the Awans, nor stated what criteria they used to determine that it was prudent to give them access to all their data.

Besides Wasserman Schultz, Imran has longstanding personal relationships with Reps. Gregory Meeks and Marcia Fudge of New York, Politico reported.

“Personal relationships”? He was their friend?

Employers also include Rep. Ted Lieu of California on the Foreign Affairs Committee and three members of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence: Reps. Andre Carson of Indiana, Jackie Speier of California and Joaquin Castro of Texas. …

Two of their employers said not a word when they were robbed by the Awans.

The Awans’ employers also included Rep. Yvette Clarke of New York, who saw $120,000 in computer equipment disappear under Abid Awan’s watch but “wrote off” the taxpayer funds rather than make an issue of it, according to the IG report and multiple senior government officials.

Xavier Becerra, now attorney general of California, ran the House Democratic Caucus, and his server was physically stolen shortly after the IG report named it as evidence in a hacking probe, three senior government officials said.

But wait, there’s more:

The Daily Caller reported on October 2, 2017:

A now-indicted IT aide to various House Democrats was sending money and gifts to government officials in Pakistan and received protection from the Pakistani police, multiple relatives claim.

A Democratic aide also said Imran Awan personally bragged to him that he could have people tortured in Pakistan. Awan’s lawyer acknowledged that he was sending money to a member of the Faisalabad police department, but said there was a good explanation.

The relatives said Awan and his brothers were also sending IT equipment, such as iPhones, to the country during the same period in which fraudulent purchase orders for that equipment were allegedly placed in the House, and in which congressional equipment apparently went missing.

Awan’s stepmother, Samina Gilani, said the brothers were paying police officer Azhar Awan and that he is their cousin.

Facebook confirms that Azhar works for the police and is Facebook “friends” with the former congressional aides, who worked for 45 Democratic House members until the aides were banned Feb. 2, following the discovery of 5,400 unauthorized logins to congressional servers and the funneling of “massive” amounts of data off the congressional network. …

A fellow Democratic House IT aide … recounted a conversation between Awan and three colleagues in a House cafeteria several years ago in which Awan seemed to relish bragging about his ability to have people harassed in Pakistan.

“He wanted to build a CRM [customer relationship management software] but he wanted to do it in Pakistan,” the aide told TheDCNF. “But the government doesn’t allow that. They have to be American, but Imran said, ‘Well, we can say that they’re American, but really they’ll be in Pakistan. I have these guys that work for the Faisalabad police department, and all we have to do is pay them $100 a month and they take them over to the police station, strip their clothes off, hang them upside down and beat them with a shoe. And that person will work hard and be loyal from then on.’  …

In early 2016, $120,000 in equipment, including iPads, were discovered missing from the office of Democratic Rep. Yvette Clarke of New York, for which Abid ran IT. Equipment billed to other congressional offices was shipped to their house, and invoices were falsified to show prices as $499 — just under the cutoff at which equipment would be inventoried by central administrators. …

Awan’s younger brothers Abid and Jamal were also on the House payroll, but have not been charged with any crimes. …

According to one witness:

Imran Awan introduces himself [in Pakistan] as someone from U.S. Congress or federal agencies … [so that he] manages to have police to escort him during his visits to Pakistan.”

But:

The Washington Post reported that the FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force was investigating the Awans, but that “according to a senior congressional official familiar with the probe, criminal investigators have found no evidence that the IT workers had any connection to a foreign government”.

If true, that raises questions about how thoroughly agents have probed.

Dan Perrin, a former staffer for the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations who had studied foreign actors, told TheDCNF there is a risk that the payments to the local police department signal a relationship to Pakistani authorities, such as the intelligence agency ISI, which he said “often works with or is embedded in the major city police forces in Pakistan.”

While they were working on Capitol Hill, the brothers set up a car dealership that took $100,000 from Ali Al-Attar, an Iraqi politician who has been tied to Hezbollah and is wanted by the U.S. Department of Justice.

Imran Awan has been indicted for fraud in connection with a crooked car-dealership.

Their former business partner, Nasir Khattak, testified in Virginia court that the car dealership’s finances consisted of byzantine transfers in which staff and cars were often swapped between it and a dealership next door. …

Perrin said the family’s numerous car-related LLCs deserve special scrutiny because car dealerships are a favorite front for people with ties to foreign governments, providing the opportunity for money laundering and “giving the owners access to credit reports on all Americans”. 

To sum up: These Pakistani crooks were engaged by Democratic members of Congress, without any enquiry into their background, to “look after” their computers which contained highly confidential information concerned with the protection of Americans. The Democrats never apparently considered the possibility that their data was being stolen and sent to Pakistani authorities. When their hardware was stolen by the crooks – and they knew it was the Awan gang who had stolen it – they did not go to the police. When the FBI did finally arrest Imran Awan in charges of fraud in a car-dealership – and denied that the gang “had any connection with a foreign government” – Imran Awan continued to be on the payroll of Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz.

The Democrats were putty in the hands of the foreign criminal gang. Helpless as babies. They feared to offend them by reporting them to the police or firing them.

Yet these people, for whom large numbers of Americans voted to represent them in the federal government, want, yearn, ache to rule the country. To conduct US relations with foreign powers. To be in charge of the world’s mightiest military force … 

The lure of the West 3

A possible and excellent solution to the Islamization of the West presents itself: Muslims leaving Islam.

Having encountered the far better life, the far richer culture of the West; having felt the freedom; having seen the opportunities –  especially for women – many Muslims are daring to become apostates.

At least in America it is happening to a significant extent.

The Economist reports:

As the number of American Muslims has increased by almost 50% in the past decade, so too has the number of ex-Muslims. According to the Pew Research Centre, 23% of Americans raised as Muslims no longer identify with the faith. Most of them are young second-generation immigrants who have come to reject the religion of their parents. Some, however, are older when their crisis of faith arrives, already married to devout Muslim spouses and driving children to the mosque to study the Koran at weekends.

The vast majority, whether young or old, are silent about their faithlessness. One Muslim college student, who came home drunk one evening, was confronted by his father. Not thinking clearly, the son confessed to his father that he was an atheist, whereupon the father revealed that he too had lost his faith many years ago. Yet he still admonished his son for not hiding his secret well enough.

Publicly leaving Islam is difficult because many Muslims live in tight-knit communities. Many apostates are left closeted, afraid to put at risk their relationships with their parents, on whom they may still depend, or with their siblings and their friends. Non-believing Mormons, Hasidic Jews and evangelical Christians find themselves in a similar predicament. Within Somali enclaves in Minneapolis and Pakistani ones in Dallas, renunciation of Islam is tantamount to renunciation of an entire social circle. “The most frustrating part is living knowing that my life has to be guided by the rules I don’t agree with,” says one still deep in the closet.

Apostasy is different from apathy, but that is also growing among Muslims. Among believers aged 55 or older, 53% say they perform all five of the mandatory daily prayers — no easy feat, considering that the first must be done before dawn. Among Muslim millennials, that proportion falls to 33%. Few would be ostracised for missing a prayer, or not fasting during the month of Ramadan — so long as those misdeeds were not made public.

In broad terms, there are two types of ex-Muslims. Those who are from less religious families simply drift away and face fewer repercussions. “It was a progression,” says one such ex-Muslim, who stopped praying at the age of eight after noticing that nothing cataclysmic happened when she missed a prayer one day. Then she starting sneaking meals during Ramadan, before moving on to alcohol and premarital sex. At 18, she was an atheist.

Then there are those in more religious households. They tend to have cleaner breaks, sudden realisations while studying the Koran or the Hadith, the sayings of the Prophet Muhammad. Often the verses that trigger this are controversial ones about slavery or gender that family members and imams cannot explain satisfactorily. Coming across the writings of Ayaan Hirsi Ali, Richard Dawkins, or Christopher Hitchens sometimes has the same effect. Some chafe at sexism or homophobia. “I remember one Halloween, I wasn’t allowed to go trick-or-treating because I had to clean up after dinner, but all my male cousins and brothers got to go,” says one female ex-Muslim who is not out to her family (nor will ever be, she fears).

To cope, some look online, seeking solace in anonymous forums. One, hosted on Reddit, has nearly 30,000 followers. Here ex-Muslims trade stories of families kicking their children out after they confess their disbelief. But they also traffic in lighter-hearted fare, like taking pictures of booze-and-pork meals during Ramadan — enjoyed in the daylight, of course

Despite all the pressure of family and community, more ex-Muslims seem to be going public. Ex-Muslims of North America (EXMNA), an advocacy organisation, has pushed for those who safely can to publicly declare their renunciations. “The goal is to change things enough so that we no longer need to exist,” says Sarah Haider, EXMNA’s director. The group launched a university tour, entitled “Normalising Dissent”, which has attracted angry critics and required extensive security preparations. Though she must contend with death threats, and has to be quite vigilant about infiltrators to her organization, Ms Haider persists. “Condemnation is still acknowledgment,” she notes.

While the penalties for apostasy can be high in the West, they are much more severe in the Muslim world. In Pakistan, blasphemy carries a death sentence. In Bangladesh, atheist writers have been hacked to death by machete-wielding vigilantes. An atheist who recently appeared on Egyptian television to debate a former deputy sheikh from Al-Azhar University was dismissed by the host and told that he needed to see a psychiatrist.

Millions who were so fortunate as to have been born into freedom in the countries of the West, now despise and even hate their country and their culture. The Left’s grip on education has meant that they have been indoctrinated to feel guilty over their own history and heritage. But the truth is, thanks to the Enlightenment the West is the superior civilization. The West is civilization itself – fighting an intense political battle for its survival against the destructive ideologies of the Left and encroaching Islam.

The more Muslims who come to appreciate our civilization, the more who abandon their religion and adopt our ways, the better for us, for them, for all humankind.

Rebuilding the might of the USA 6

President Trump has explained that he had to sign the outrageous “omnibus” bill because he urgently needs the funds for rebuilding the US military.

Matthew Vadum writes at Front Page:

After eight long years of Barack Obama decimating the military, President Trump is proudly beginning the process of rebuilding the nation’s armed forces and defense  capabilities.

Decimating? Destroying one in ten of whatever? Much as we appreciate the article we are quoting, it was not a “decimation” of the military; it was letting the equipment of national defense, the weapons of war, decay. The very fabric of America’s ships and planes was allowed to rot.

Obama manifestly hated the US military. (Not “the military” in general – he had a soft spot for Iranian missiles and potential nuclear bombs.)

As the president signed the omnibus spending bill Friday that avoided another partial government shutdown and funded the government through the end of the fiscal year Sept. 30, Defense Secretary James Mattis, hailed the measure as “the largest military budget in history, reversing many years of decline and unpredictable funding.”

At the White House Trump explained why such a spending boost was necessary as he reflected on the serious damage that the previous president did to national security and military preparedness.

For the last eight years, deep defense cuts have undermined our national security, hollowed out  — if you look at what’s taken out, they’ve hollowed our readiness as a military unit, and put America at really grave risk. My highest duty is to keep America safe. Nothing more important. The omnibus bill reverses this dangerous defense trend. As crazy as it’s been, as difficult as it’s been, as much opposition to the military as we’ve had from the Democrats –  and it has been tremendous –  I try to explain to them, you know, the military is for Republicans and Democrats and everybody else. It’s for everybody. But we have tremendous opposition to creating, really, what will be by far the strongest military that we’ve ever had.

Trump said at the press conference that he was signing the massive pork-laden spending bill that contains “a lot of things that I’m unhappy about” because of “national security.”

But I say to Congress: I will never sign another bill like this again. I’m not going to do it again. Nobody read it. It’s only hours old. Some people don’t even know what is in it. $1.3 trillion — it’s the second largest ever.

The bill contains an impressive $700 billion in military expenditures, about $3 billion of which will go to the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter program. Trump rattled off a list of other line items, $1.8 billion for 24 FA-18E/F Super Hornet aircraft fighter jets, $1.7 billion for 10 P-8, $1.1 billion for 56 UH-60 Black Hawk helicopters, $1.1 billion to upgrade 85 Abrams tanks, and $705 million “for the cooperative programs that we’re working with Israel and others on various missile defense systems.”

“We’re spending a lot of money on missile defense,” Trump added. “We have a lot of offense that’s been recently installed. We’re spending tremendous money on missile defense.”

Ramping up spending after Obama’s assaults on the military is critical, defense analysts say.

Obama did lasting damage to the military, according to Thomas C. Donnelly of the American Enterprise Institute who after Obama left office inventoried the damage the 44th president did.

Obama attempted to end U.S. involvement in the Middle East by unilaterally pulling out of Iraq, carrying out a fake surge in Afghanistan, and ignoring the Syrian civil war, Donnelly writes. Obama let Russia annex Crimea, and China artificially create islands in the South China Sea.

Obama told outgoing then-Russian president Dmitry Medvedev in 2012 to pass the message on to Vladimir Putin to ease up on the missile defense issue until after that year’s approaching election when Obama would “have more flexibility”. 

There’s collusion for anyone who is really looking for it and not just inventing it in order to depose the president.

Obama also limited any future president’s ability to use the military overseas by curtailing its resources.

Comparing the five-year defense plan Obama left Trump with, with the plan Obama was left with at the end of George W. Bush’s presidency, the Department of Defense “has lost more than $250 billion in purchasing power”.

In his first year in office, Obama ordered then-Defense Secretary Robert Gates to slice off $300 billion from Pentagon programs, “which had the effect of eliminating several of the major weapons-acquisitions projects that had survived Donald Rumsfeld’s attempt to ‘transform’ the force by ‘skipping a generation of weapons systems’.”

Gates halted the production of the F-22, limiting it to 187 planes instead of the 750 the Air Force originally wanted and scuttled another $80 billion in spending, which Obama transferred to non-defense programs, Donnelly writes.

“Non-defense programs” such as “outreach to Muslims”, wasn’t it?

In 2011 Obama chopped another $400 billion from the DoD budget without even telling Gates in advance, which led to the so-called sequestration or Budget Control Act (BCA) that capped defense spending for years but left entitlement spending intact. The move led to long-term spending on Pentagon programs by almost $1 trillion from fiscal 2009 to 2023, he writes.

President Obama slashed Army and Marines personnel and gutted the ships and airplanes of the Navy and Air Force. The reduced force is not as well prepared as its predecessors.

“During the Cold War, the units of the Army and Air Force were always about 90 percent ready in terms of personnel, equipment, and training,” but nowadays readiness is down to about 60 percent or less, [Donnelly] writes.

This also means that the military’s ability to do anything more challenging than routine operations, such as keeping sea lanes open, is severely limited. It is no coincidence that in his 2012 “defense guidance,” Obama lowered the standard by which we determine the optimal size of our forces. Since the years prior to World War II, and as befits a global power, we have maintained the capacity to conduct two large-scale campaigns at once. Obama lowered the bar to just one war at a time.

Obama’s cockamamie social engineering schemes devastated the military’s morale, something his successor aims to turn around.

Trump’s presser came after his announcement Thursday that U.S. Army Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster (active) would soon be replaced by former United Nations Ambassador John Bolton as national security advisor. Bolton’s appointment is an unalloyed good that will benefit U.S. national security.

McMaster replaced Mike Flynn, also a lieutenant general in the Army (retired) in February 2017 after just 24 days in the post, the briefest such tenure on record. McMaster was a disaster at the National Security Council where he spent his time protecting Obama holdovers and purging competent professionals attuned to the threat that Islamofascism, including the brutal totalitarian theocracy in Iran, poses to the United States.

With Bolton at Trump’s side and ramped up defense spending, America may well be on its way to having its greatness restored.

Yes, and may it be so.

The Islamic Republic of Britain 12

The UK is accelerating its Islamization at an ever-increasing speed. The desire of the British establishment to submit to Islam appears to be overwhelming.

So Judith Bergman writes at Gatestone.

She first demonstrates how the state schools are becoming Islamized, then she continues (in part):

The [Christian] clerical establishment is … pressing Britons to accept and accommodate the ongoing Islamization more readily. …

Britain’s security establishment also seems longing to submit to Islam. Scotland Yard recently warned that hate crimes (“Islamophobia”, in other words, as no other hate crime is taken as seriously) are “hugely underreported”. Chief Superintendent Dave Stringer, Scotland Yard’s head of community engagement said: “The Met [the Metropolitan Police force] has seen a steady increase in the reporting of all hate crime, particularly racist and religious hate crime. Despite this rise, hate crime is hugely underreported and no one should suffer in silence.”

[But] it is virtually impossible for “Islamophobia” to be “underreported” in London. The UK is nothing if not clinically obsessed with “Islamophobia”. In 2016, London mayor Sadiq Khan’s Office for Policing and Crime announced it was spending £1.7 million of taxpayer money policing speech online. Less than six months ago, London police teamed up with Transport for London authorities to encourage people to report hate crimes during “National Hate Crime Awareness Week”, which ran from October 14-21. The events were mainly targeted at Muslims, with officers visiting the East London Mosque to encourage reporting hate crimes. British police have even been taking lessons about Islam and “Islamophobia” from radical Islamist groups such as Mend. One of the most active Mend figures, Azad Ali, has said that he has “love” for Anwar Al-Awlaki, an influential US-born Islamic terrorist, who was killed by a US drone strike in Yemen in 2011.

Meantime, while the police obsess over “Islamophobia”, regular crime in London is exploding. The latest statistics from the London Mayor’s Office for Policing and Crime show that in the past year, homicides have increased 27.1%, knife crimes have increased 31.3%, and there were 2,551 incidents of gun crime, representing a rise of 16.3%. Police recorded 7,613 rapes in the 12 months through January 2018 compared with 6,392 for the previous year, a rise of almost 20%. … The figures also show an 8% increase in other sexual offenses in the past year, bringing the total number of reported rapes and sexual assaults in London to almost 20,000. Campaigners have suggested the real figure could be “significantly higher” once unreported attacks are taken into account. British police, meanwhile, say they are at a loss to explain what is causing the rise in rapes.

Because so many of the rapists are Muslims, and no one is allowed to say so. Those who do say so are hunted down by the police, who spend their resources on that absurd mission rather than on fighting real crime.

The Metropolitan Police Deputy Commissioner Sir Craig Mackey was recently asked if he had any idea what was behind the surge. His answer: “No, is the honest answer… there is something going on with sexual offending in London that we don’t fully understand, the causes of it. We see the end of it, [but] we don’t understand the causes.”

Meanwhile, 65,000 cases of child sex abuse reached a record high in 2017, or 177 every day: up 15% from 2016.

In Rotherham alone, after 16 years of dismissing the problem, the number of child abuse cases [Muslims “grooming” underage girls as prostitutes] rose to 1,510. The National Crime Agency (NCA) inquiry, “the biggest of its kind in the UK, has identified 110 suspects, of whom 80% are of Pakistani heritage”, officers said.

In its seeming eagerness to submit to Islam, the security establishment even appears to be willing to compare people responding to Islamization and Islamic terrorism with the Islamic terrorists themselves. In a recent lecture, one of the UK’s top counterterrorism officials, Assistant Commissioner Mark Rowley, outgoing head of counter-terrorism policing, compared Tommy Robinson, an anti-Islamist activist, often described as “far-right,” to Anjem Choudary, a radical terrorist-linked Islamist cleric who has advocated sharia in the UK and is now serving a prison sentence for urging support for ISIS.

“Robinson also became a regular fixture in our media, giving him the platform to attack the whole religion of Islam by conflating acts of terrorism with the faith, often citing spurious claims, which inevitably stirred up tensions” Rowley said, “Each side feeds into each other’s extremist rhetoric with the common goal of increasing tensions and divisions in communities”.

Tommy Robinson’s “claims” about Islam were not spurious. He is a brave teller of the truth about that barbaric ideology.

Islam is supremacist, totalitarian, homophobic, misogynist, deeply intolerant, obdurately dogmatic, murderous and savagely cruel. And that needs to be said publicly, loudly, and often. 

Rowley also said, “The right-wing threat was not previously organized. Every now and then there’s been an individual motivated by that rhetoric who has committed a terrorist act, but we’ve not had an organized right-wing threat like we do now”.

Perhaps Rowley might stop to consider why there is now an organized right-wing threat. The British establishment – people such as Rowley – have categorically embraced the “Islam is peace” narrative. The establishment has even let itself and its police be lectured by radical Islamist organizations such as Mend on what Islam is – and has doggedly refused to listen to any dissident voices.

Here is a video in which a dissident voice makes itself heard. Anne Marie Waters, leader of the new political party For Britain, gives a rousing speech to inspire popular resistance against the Islamization of her country. She rightly rages against the “fascist” EU, then – starting at about the 5.50 minutes mark – daringly condemns Islam. “Millions of us are offended by this religion,” she declares.

 

(Hat-tip for the video to our British associate, Chauncey Tinker)

Human rights for rapists? 11

Another gift of a video from the great Pat Condell:

Posted under Britain, Europe, immigration, Islam, Muslims, United Kingdom, Videos by Jillian Becker on Saturday, March 24, 2018

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A European atheist speaks out against Islam 2

Louis Sarkozy, the atheist son of former French president Nicolas Sarkozy, writes at the Washington Examiner:

On Feb. 23, 2017, national security adviser H.R. McMaster reiterated his stance that Islamic ideology is essentially irreligious, and that Jihadi terrorists are not true to the religion they claim to be part of.

Well, he’s going now. Out of the White House where he should never have been. Because – or partly because –

He discouraged the use of the phrase “radical Islamic terrorism” because “terrorist organizations like ISIS represent a perversion of Islam, and are thus un-Islamic”.  In December, McMaster warned us to “never buy in or reinforce the terrorist narrative that this is a war of religion”.

Although commonplace, this argument is simply wrong. While I rightly acknowledge it’s perfectly possible to follow Islam without committing or encouraging terrorism, we cannot ignore the link between doctrine and behavior. It is impossible to deny the role that Islam, as a set of ideals, plays in international terrorism and gross abuse of human rights in the countries where it is enacted by law.

When it comes to religion, doctrine matters. And how can anyone hope to have a productive discussion about the tenets that make up Islam when even the mildest criticism of the doctrine labels you bigoted, racist, or (gasp), Islamophobic?

As an atheist, I stand outside the reach of all religions equally, and recognize that religious history and doctrinal differences matter.

Generally, public criticism of any religion, ancient or contemporary, is completely acceptable, and should be encouraged. It is noteworthy, then, that criticism of any other religion nowadays will earn you at worst a dose of invective, whereas saying the wrong words or drawing the wrong cartoons about Islam will get you killed in any country where Islam is the official religion, and liable to earn you physical repercussions in countries where it is not.

Why is that it in Western countries, merely pointing out the similarities between the writings of the Quran and the Hadiths and the violent and intolerant preachings of groups such as the Islamic State is cause for censure?

We certainly have no problem holding Christianity responsible for its part in the horrific Spanish Inquisition, nor do we stutter at recognizing Christian scripture as having encouraged anti-Semitic attitudes along European history.

Ah, I can hear the rebuttal already: “Of course there are horrible passages in the Quran. It was written at a different time, and there are similarly horrible ones in the Bible!”

Without a doubt, the Bible is a bloody, violent book filled with unspeakable atrocities. But then, why is it that no Christian feels personally targeted when Deuteronomy 21:18-21, which encourages the public stoning of disobedient children, is criticized?

It is because Christianity has gone through, over the past few hundred years, a modernization process where it has been ejected out of civil law, and where its most vile and intolerant preachings are no longer ordained as official doctrine by the church’s institutions.

With some exceptions (such as enduring Medieval attitudes toward homosexuality and fundamentalists’ rejection of science in favor of creationism) the most vile, intolerant, and backward parts of Christian practice have been abandoned.

Islam, on the other hand, has become more intolerant than it was a millennium ago, when Muslims were creating algebra and algorithms and naming the celestial bodies. The result is that Christians can shake off most criticisms of their own scripture and their beliefs, but the Islamic world seems a lot more thin-skinned.

Affable but important  disagreement here. Actually, Islam was never  tolerant. (See our post, The Myth of Islamic Enlightenment, March 10, 2010 here.) The creation of algorithms has nothing to do with tolerance. And algebra is much older than Islam. 

One of the great algebraists in the Islamic world was the Persian mathematician, scientist, poet, Omar Kayyam. ( Yes, he of The Rubáiyát of Omar Khayyám, translated into English by Edward FitzGerald.) Omar Kayyam was an atheist.

I, however, reject the often-brought-up and dangerous notion of this conflict being a “war of civilization”, pitching the united secular West against the similarly united dogmatic Islamic world.

Right. (We call it a clash of civilization with barbarism.)

This is wrong simply because it is an inaccurate depiction of both sides. This particular struggle is far more complicated and it is certainly not contained by international borders or racial origin. This is a war of ideas, not of skin color.

Which is why the first victims of Islamic extremism are almost always Muslims: women, apostates, homosexuals, modern Muslims seeking the evolution of their faith, and yes, even just Muslims who belong to the wrong traditional Islamic sect.

Similarly, the people often most opposed to helping the victims of Islamo-fascism, those who refuse to hold Islamic ideas accountable for their role in these crimes, are not Muslims at all, but westerners brandishing multiculturalist arguments.

Meaningful change can only come from within the Islamic world, from the reformist voices that want to modernize Islam to fit today’s standards of human decency and compassion. These are the people whom we must try to empower today by giving them coverage, a platform to speak out of, and most importantly, by acknowledging their suffering and struggle.

It is for this reason that we must not delude ourselves with the idea that all cultures are equally good in every way. We should not shy away from sensitive conversations about the role of religious dogma, even at the risk of being called racist or Islamophobic. Such insults are minor and insignificant compared to the atrocities that the victims of this violent and intolerant doctrine suffer every day.

Good stuff for the most part. If only Nicolas Sarkozy had understood what his son does, and had kept the Muslim masses out of France when he could have done so!

It’s now too late to remedy the harm done or prevent the developing disaster, even if there were a French leader who wanted to do it. All Western Europe will fall under Islamic rule, including Britain.

Posted under Islam, jihad, Muslims by Jillian Becker on Friday, March 23, 2018

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Tommy Robinson delivers a banned speech at Speakers’ Corner 8

Martin Sellner, the Austrian leader of Generation Identity, was banned from entering Britain where he was to deliver a speech against the Islamization of Europe at Speakers’ Corner in Hyde Park, London.

Martin Sellner

A speech of his was, however, delivered at Speakers’ Corner – by heroic Tommy Robinson yesterday (Sunday March 18, 2018).

Tommy Robinson

Here’s the speech in full, via Breitbart:

Dear Friends, dear Britons, dear lovers of free speech

I assume you all are lovers of free speech because you have come to Speakers’  Corner.

You might not understand all the fuss happening today around this speech. Honestly, I don’t understand it either.

My name is Martin Sellner. I am an Austrian patriot, and at the moment, I’m sitting in a detention cell in Colnbrook Bypass [immigration removal centre] near Heathrow. My smartphone was taken and my girlfriend Brittany [Pettibone] was separated from me. I currently don’t know where she is. We will be deported on Sunday.

Five minutes ago, they unlocked our cells and my fellow inmates are gathering in the prison wing. They are mostly illegals and eastern European criminals.

What brought me into this situation? What was my crime?

My crime was that I wanted to be here with you, to speak at Speakers’ Corner.

But let’s start with the beginning. I was invited by UKIP to present my movement at an event last Autumn. I represent Generation Identity — a patriotic European youth movement that is raising awareness about mass immigration and Islamization.

Far-left people call us right-wing, people who want to shut free speech down call us “fascist”, and folks who hate their own culture call us “racist”.

In reality, we are just a group of young patriots fed up with the system, the mainstream press and lying politicians. We use peaceful activism to make our voices heard, and contrary to our friends on the radical left, who are probably swarming you right now, we never wear masks.

From Paris to Rome, from Vienna to London, we fight peacefully but without compromise for our freedom, our homelands, and our identity.

This is what I wanted to speak about in Autumn. But the conference was cancelled due to threats from the radical left. The venue would not take the risk. So they rescheduled it for March, this time keeping the venue secret — but again the terror of the left prevailed, and the venue dropped out. But this time I did not want to let them win! It was about principles! (Also, our flights were already booked.)

My last refuge was Speakers’ Corner. I remembered my mother telling me about that special place when I was a child. It seemed almost magical to me. A place where everyone, without exception, could just stand on a box and start to speak to those who wanted to listen. I have always loved this tradition of Speakers’ Corner, which seemed very British to me.

But I came only to see that this tradition — the tradition of freedom of speech in the United Kingdom — is dead.

Your Country is blocking you from challenging ideas from the outside. This is a disgrace to our democracy!

I should be speaking in a neat, warm conference room right now, and you should be sitting in comfortable chairs. Instead, I’m in my cell and you are on the street in a standoff with the enemies of freedom of speech.

And this is very telling! Today there is a war going on for our freedom of speech. This war is being fought on the streets, by you!

Every man and woman showing her face today, standing shoulder to shoulder, is standing up against a new totalitarianism that has been growing for far too long. You can be proud of yourself. You might not even agree with me on every point — you are simply giving a statement that I should have the right to speak my mind freely.

I would love to be among you now. They prevented me from it. They locked up the speaker, but I know that the speech will find a way through the iron bars. It will find a way to you and you are going to hear what your government so desperately wants to protect you from.

Those words which they consider more harmful to you then rape gangs or terrorists who are let into your country again and again.

I’m going to tell you something nobody has told you before. It’s the biggest, most obvious secret of our media our politicians and our powerholders: People of Britain, you are being replaced.

There has always been immigration in your history. People coming in, assimilating. But what’s happening today is different: You are being replaced by massive Muslim immigration.

You see it everywhere: in London, in Manchester, but also already in the little countryside towns. A big replacement is going on.

And let me tell you: your politicians have no plan, no vision and no idea how to deal with the problems that come along. Problems like you have seen in Telford, Rotherham, and on Westminster Bridge.

All across Europe, there is a shadow hanging over our heads. The French are whispering about it in the Metro, the Germans murmuring about it when they feel unwatched, Italians look left and right, and if nobody is listening they tell you: “I don’t feel at home anymore in my street. We are becoming foreigners in our own country.”

And again and again I hear: “We are not allowed to talk about it.”

And that’s the bizarre drama of the “strange death of Europe”. We are being replaced, conquered by radical Islam, and we are not allowed to talk about it!

Dear Britons, defenders of free speech. Out of my cell in Colnbrook, I want to ask you something. Be honest and raise your hands.

Who among you has ever been in the following situation: You grab a beer after work, or you are visiting your girlfriend’s parents for the first time, or you meet other children’s parents at school — and suddenly the conversation moves to politics: radical Islam, immigration.

Who of you in this very moment was faced with the decision between speaking his mind and facing problems, or complying and staying silent?

Raise your hands and be honest.

I will not be able to see the results, but every single hand is too much. This amount of fear should not exist in a society. Speech that has social costs and severe consequences is no longer free. It has a price — and our Government and the Antifa are working everyday to raise that price.

No freedom of speech means no democracy. In front of our very eyes this country is becoming a tyranny, shutting all debates about immigration down, until demographics solves the issue by replacement.

People of the UK. I might be in a cell right now, but you all are in a cell. It’s the prison of fear and silence your government and the PC tyranny has locked you in since the days of your childhood.

I ask you, I command you, break free!

Patriots of the UK: come out of the closet. Make your dissent visible by visible acts of resistance that inspire others. I know for certain that millions in the UK think like me. Those millions should be on the street now.

We need a coming out of the silent majority, or Britain is lost. We need a free, open and honest debate about immigration, Islam and demographics, so we can sort these problems out together.

And I know that the force is still in you. With your Brexit vote you stunned the world! The will and the life of the British nation is not broken.

Initially, I asked if freedom of speech is dead in the UK. You, every one of you who came today, is a living sign that the tradition of the UK is not dead! You are the lively tradition of your nation, saving its face before history.

People of the UK — remember who you are! Remember your glorious past, you are sons and daughters of knights, kings, explorers, philosophers and artists. Who is the sovereign in this country? Who is the sovereign in this country?

Is it big money?

The mainstream media?

The politicians?

It’s you — the people. You, the silent and invisible majority who said NO during Brexit. You can say NO again — no to Islamization, no to mass immigration, and no to the great replacement.

And YES to your identity — yes to your security, yes to your heritage and the future for your children.

And all this is impossible without freedom of speech.

I know, if these words will find their way to the UK and even to Speakers’ Corner, it will be a victory for our cause.

If they did, and if you are hearing them now, I tell you: go further on that winning streak. Don’t be afraid because we have an ally that is unbeatable: Truth.

The battle, our battle for freedom of speech, has just begun, and Speakers’ Corner will become a symbolic place in that struggle.

When you go home know I want you to bring the spirit of Speakers’ Corner with you. Every single person who raised his hand because he could relate to this moment of fear, when he did not dare to speak his mind.

Promise me: Next time I will overcome my inner fear. Next time I will speak up!

The terrifying central message of the speech is that the rulers of Britain are replacing the population. 

But Tommy Robinson could hardly be heard over the Muslim and pro-Muslim clamor of opposition to anything he might be saying.

Those who wanted to hear the speech, those who did hear it, were perhaps most encouraged by the fact of its being delivered at all, and by one of the few citizens of the United Kingdom who still will dare to speak aloud in public such forbidden words as “no to Islamization, no to mass immigration, and no to the great replacement“.

Most Britons would probably rather think of themselves as the sons and daughters of valiant yeomen and a free peasantry than of “knights, kings, philosophers and artists”. Knights, kings,  philosophers and artists are more honored in Austria than in Britain. Explorers, okay. Britons’ glorious past includes the vastest empire in history – which they are now expected, by their rulers, the importers of Muslim masses, to be ashamed of.

We strongly recommend Tommy Robinson’s book, Enemy of the State, in which he tells how he was wrongfully arrested, imprisoned for months alone in punishment cells, beaten up so badly that his face became unrecognizable, and then promised that all the pain and persecution would “go away” if he would become a secret agent of the state. He refused.

Robert Spencer, the famous American expert on the history and ideology of Islam, comments:

Last week, Tommy Robinson tried to speak at Speakers’ Corner but was stopped by police. Today [Sunday], he spoke there amid rioting by Muslims determined to silence him. Police, not surprisingly, did little to stop the rioters, focusing more on the Britons who were there to defend the freedom of speech. Robinson read the speech that Martin Sellner, the Austrian free speech activist, had intended to deliver about threats to the freedom of speech, but was banned from entering the country. Britain has recently banned Sellner, Brittany Pettibone, Lauren Southern, and Lutz Bachmann, all for the crime of opposing jihad terror and Sharia oppression, and of course has previously banned Pamela Geller and me for the same offense.

This petty authoritarianism is the act of a society in its death throes. The May government is bowing to the new masters of Britain, who support Sharia blasphemy restrictions, and handing them the leadership of the country. Theresa May will go down in British history, if there are any free Britons in future generations, as … a traitor and betrayer of her nation. 

“If there are any free Britons in future generations” sounds ominous, but the way it looks right now, there will be no such people.

Political dhimmis of the West 3

The West has learnt the word “dhimmi since Islam started to succeed (in the 1970s) with its old plan to overwhelm and rule it. A dhimmi is a non-Muslim living under Muslim rule; one who has opted to pay protection money to the overlords in exchange for being allowed to live; one who has submitted to Islam without converting to it.

Which is to say – submitted to an inferior culture, law, and ideology.

But the word could be used more widely. It could usefully be applied to the many weak intellectuals, academics, postmodernists, deconstructionists, feminists … to all who have submitted to the inferior culture, values, ideology of the Left.

They are easy to spot. Their speech is a chant. They chant mantras of the Left.

ReBecca Roloff

Here is an example, so pure it could be used as a perfect model by all “politically correct” dhimmis. It was written by ReBecca [sic] Roloff,  president of St. Catherine University, a Catholic school in St. Paul, Minnesota, to explain why an annual leadership conference was cancelled for 2018. The organizers had suddenly realized that the invited speakers – leaders in industry and commerce – were almost all white people. The Left does not approve of people being hired, appointed to leadership positions, or invited to speak at universities, because of their their merit and achievement. The Left wants people to get jobs and honors on a quota system, to be hired and appointed for – above all else – their color and race. No whites allowed – or as few as may be absolutely necessary, and those few guaranteed to be deeply ashamed of themselves for being white. Ditto if they are male, because “gender” matters next after race. Third, they should not be patriots, Christians, Israelis/Jews, and decidedly not conservatives of any race or “gender”. Fourth, they should not be middle-class  – or even persons of [proven] “ability”! 

In a time where sexism and racism, in their individual and institutional forms, are recognized and called out, those of us in positions of power and privilege – be it through whiteness, maleness, middle-class position, heterosexual-normativity, ability, or Christianity – must slow down, reflect, and listen to those who have been subject to systematic silencing, exploitation, marginalization, and exclusion.

Leftists do not look out of the same window as conservatives. Theirs opens on to a different landscape. They see different causes for political action and judge them according to a different set of values. Their discourse is conducted in different words, a vocabulary out of their own slim political lexicon. The most important word is “diversity“, which means the hiring, appointing, inviting, and listening to only non-white, non-male, non-“heteronormative”, non-middle-class persons who are all of the same political opinion. They see a mirage of President Trump “colluding” with Vladimir Putin.

They do not see what we conservatives see through our window: the need to strengthen the economy by lowering taxes and lifting regulations; to stem the flow of illegal immigrants into the US; to deport illegal aliens who are dangerous criminals; to heal the government agencies that were infected with Clintonitis under the Obama administration. They do not see the Islamic invasion of Europe, the constant threat of terrorism there and in the US by Muslims affiliated with al-Qaeda, ISIS, the Taliban, Iran, Qatar …. They are not concerned about Iran becoming a nuclear power, or North Korea dropping a nuke on Guam. They do not discuss the war in the Middle East. They refuse to notice the outcome of socialist policies imposed in Venezuela where people are now starving.

They attack the Constitution. They want to change the First Amendment so they can stop the expression of all ideas they don’t want to hear. They want to change the Second Amendment so they can stop citizens owning guns.

Institutions could be labeled dhimmis too. Most of the top universities are earning it.

Here’s James Delingpole commenting on Oxford University’s decision that from now on 40% of recommended authors on philosophy reading lists must be women. (How the heck did it arrive at that number?)

How many feminists does it take to ruin a philosophy course?

Oxford University will be letting you know shortly, once it has got the results of its latest politically correct academic experiment.

From now on, Oxford’s philosophy faculty has decreed, 40 percent of the recommended authors on its departmental reading lists must be female.

Also, academic staff have been asked to use philosophers’ first names rather than their initials when compiling reading lists, to make it clearer to undergraduates which ones are female.

This is great news for Barbara Socrates, Mandy Aristotle, Seraphina Wittgenstein, Nancy Descartes, Fifi Trixibelle Locke, Suzi Nietzsche, Bobbi Confucius, Ermintrude Plato, and Petronella Hume, to name but a few of the awesome female philosophical intellects who have been cruelly neglected by history because sexism, misogyny, and the oppressive phallocentric hegemony. …

How then is this new gender quota going to improve standards on the philosophy course at Oxford – formerly (till it became irredeemably SJW converged) one of the world’s better universities?

Short answer: it won’t.

As with artists, composers, writers, musicians, and pretty much every creative or intellectual endeavour you can name, so it is with philosophers: the vast majority of the really great ones were men and the vast majority – for obvious reasons which need not detain us here – always will be men, regardless of how many female contenders get overpromoted thanks to the current fad for enforced gender justice.

So by encouraging students to break down their reading lists according to this ridiculous, politically correct 60:40 gender quota, all the philosophy faculty is doing is promoting dross at the expense of bullion.

Graduates of the philosophy course at Oxford will no longer plausibly be able to claim that they have been properly grounded in the canon because, inevitably, there will be gaps in their knowledge created by the time they’ve wasted on Germaine Greer when they could have been reading someone proper.

This is where Oxford is going unfortunately. And also where Cambridge is going, where Harvard, Yale, and Stanford are going, where most of our great seats of learning are going, in fact.

The twin curses of postmodernism and cultural Marxism have so corrupted academe that even the best universities now prize social justice more highly than intellectual excellence – and aren’t even embarrassed to boast about it. They actually think that gender quotas are a sign of progress.

But do they actually think?

Do as I say, or else 1

Theodore Dalrymple, whose many excellent books commenting illuminatingly on our times includes Our Culture, What’s Left Of It, gives this account of how fascist-communist “anti-fascist” Antifa fell violently upon a quiet literary event in the English town of Lewes.

We quote much but not all of it from New English Review. Go here to read the whole thing:

I was to be the penultimate speaker, followed by a controversial conservative journalist, Katie Hopkins, who was to talk about her own recently published memoir, Rude.

The event ended in violence.

The festival organizer … had informed me in advance that there might be trouble from demonstrators who would want to prevent Hopkins from speaking. …

To say that she is unafraid of controversy or criticism is to understate the case. They are her stock-in-trade. …  [A]n outspoken, not to say militant, mocker of current political pieties, she is herself the object of the most severe objurgation, with no allowances made. In debate, she is uncompromising and fearless. …

She appears genuinely not to mind when attacked on television or in print or on social media: she accepts with good grace the fact that, if you express opinions in public, you must expect criticism and detraction, fair or otherwise, though she always returns blow for blow. She laughs at insults. …

Her main mode of defense is always attack …

She has been a severe critic of the Islamization of Britain. She speaks the truth about it. And that is not permitted in Britain now.

So Hopkins is widely regarded as a purveyor of hate speech — utterance that is to be answered by prohibition, rather than by argument. The category of hate speech is disturbingly expandable and depends on the propensity of groups of people to take offense or feel threatened (where it pays to be offended, people will take offense). Certain groups, but not others, are accorded legal or social protection from unpleasant name-calling, as if they were endangered species. …

Considerable efforts were made to bar Hopkins from speaking at the event. When I arrived in Lewes, posters in many windows proclaimed that Lewes wanted no hate speech. A town councillor had argued that the invitation to Hopkins should be withdrawn. The council had the right to ask for this because it owned and ran the venue, a deconsecrated church; and the councillor argued that the demonstration against Hopkins would be so violent that her appearance would constitute a threat to health, safety, and public order. On legal advice, however, that this argument was blatantly political, the council, with not a single Conservative member despite the town’s evident prosperity, voted overwhelmingly for the invitation to stand.

It turned out that the councillor who had argued for the withdrawal of the invitation was sympathetic to the demonstration against Hopkins, so that in essence his argument had been almost a threat: if you do not do as I say, like-minded people will react violently, and since you have been warned, such violence will be your fault. Do as I say, or else: the new democratic principle.

I gave my talk without interruption from the gathering crowd outside, but during the question-and-answer that followed, as Hopkins’s time to speak grew nearer, I heard some banging on the windows, at which fists and angry faces also appeared. Then there was some chanting, but not so loud as to make me inaudible. The trouble really began after I had finished speaking, in the short break before Hopkins was to start. The councillor’s self-fulfilling prophecy was about to come true.

A crowd of perhaps 120 had by now gathered outside the hall. Initially, only two policemen were present. One was pelted with so many eggs that he looked as if someone were planning to make him into an omelet. Eyewitnesses attested that some of the demonstrators handed eggs to children to throw at the police, presumably because the children would be too young to be arrested for assault. At any rate, it is significant that some adults were so determined to prevent Hopkins from speaking that they thought it reasonable and appropriate to bring children to a potentially violent occasion — an occasion, in fact, at which they themselves were prepared to employ violence. This is surely a demonstration of the ability of ideology to induce practical moral blindness.

Some of the demonstrators were masked. They tried to prevent those who had bought a ticket for the event from entering the building. One of those ticket holders subsequently wrote and published an account of what happened when she [and her companion] attempted to gain entrance:

There was a very large and noisy demonstration in the grounds and spilling onto the road, and we were immediately taunted as we made our way to the lynch gate [sic: a Freudian slip, if ever there was one, from lych-gate], despite no one knowing who we were. A militia of masked young men dressed in black tried to prevent us from entering the grounds. At first I thought they were working with the police, controlling the flow to protect attendees from the scuffles ahead, because a couple of policemen were observing at close quarters. One militiaman asked me why I was there. I said to hear Katie. He immediately swore at me, called me a fascist, bounced against me, manhandled me and tried to push me over. I was wearing stilettos and he easily pushed me into a bush, which thankfully cushioned my fall. I said: I have every right to be here. I looked towards a policeman for support, but he turned away, having seen everything. Anthony, who was now a few yards away, came to my side, and we stayed very close from then on as we determinedly made our way through to the church doors. Anthony is visibly Asian/ethnic and was not attacked as I was. Our keeping very close afforded me some protection as the crowd was chanting that it was pro refugees, unlike fascist Hopkins. 

We came to a stop about six feet from the church’s main doors, which were solidly closed. A line of five thugs, a man on a large mobility scooter, and a woman had blocked our path. I tried to reason with the woman, who looked out of place and even a little scared herself, being so petite. She said that people with vile views should not be allowed to speak. I said I thought we fought two world wars to protect free speech. I mentioned that my grandmother’s brother ended up in a concentration camp because he was a French citizen who stood up against the Nazis’ bullying. She maintained the mantra that evil people should not be allowed to spread their filth. There was no reasoning, and I didn’t want to provoke anyone, as we were trapped, and there were calls for Katie’s blood; so, I kept quiet. 

Suddenly, the crowd behind surged, and it looked like we might be in serious danger as eggs were thrown, a placard headed our way, and more militants appeared. Just then a journalist from More Radio appeared at my side. He was immediately denounced as a fascist by one of the thugs, but he brought out a mike and began to interview the most vociferous one, a particularly on-edge individual who looked a cigarette paper away from hurting someone. The ghastly young thug said it was necessary to stop this speech because if it was allowed we would soon become like Nazi Germany and worse.

It was well after the start time by now, and the journalist phoned a colleague and confirmed to us that the event [of Katie’s speech] had been cancelled.

News got around. The protestors chanted their victory. Some cried something like “When she comes out, we’ll get her.” We could hear others asking what to do when Katie appeared. …  The church door opened briefly and protestors surged forward. It was quickly shut. A policeman, who looked terrified, came to the front and spoke into his walkie-talkie, but soon disappeared into the graveyard. We knew we had to get out, as the crowd wanted blood.

We followed the radio journalist, who conducted a tortuous route to safety through the muddy graveyard. Later, on the pavement, when I suggested to him these folks were Momentum [a militant left-wing organization affiliated with the Labour Party], he said he believed they were from Antifa [a militant, ostensibly antifascist, movement that believes in political homeopathy, namely, that the employment of fascist methods will drive out fascism]. He said that most of the protestors were not people from Lewes (where he lived).

While all this was going on, my wife and I, who had intended to leave to catch our train before Hopkins spoke, were trapped inside the hall, having been advised by the egg-covered policeman to wait. The banging and the chanting were now incessant. There were about 40 of us inside to 120 outside. One lady I spoke to was terrified and in tears because she had been separated from her husband by the mob and did not know where he was. One man described how one of the demonstrators said to him that he would let him pass and enter the hall, as if he had the authority in his gift to permit or prohibit. Another lady wished that she had never come. A German lady said that she had come to live in England in 1968 precisely to avoid this kind of thing, which had then seemed so common in Germany. Where had the tolerance and good humor she had known in those days gone?

Some of the demonstrators managed to break into the church using a crowbar. Bouncers provided by a security company (after another such company had pulled out, fearing more serious violence than it could handle) rushed after the intruders. One bouncer suffered a serious injury to his arm, requiring an operation.

Hopkins was smuggled out of the building, the police having advised her, before she was able to speak, that they could not guarantee her safety if she stayed. She tweeted that she had left the building and asked the demonstrators to disperse peacefully. When police reinforcements arrived, somewhat tardily, the people in the hall were escorted under cover of darkness out through a back entrance and through the ancient graveyard. This was no doubt advisable, but, in effect, it turned the law-abiding rather than the lawbreakers into fugitives.

The police made no arrests, despite having been assaulted themselves and witnessed others being assaulted, despite the fact that a building was illegally broken into, despite the fact that 40 people had been falsely imprisoned, despite the fact that threatening language (of a degree likely to make any reasonably firm-minded person afraid for his safety) had been used repeatedly. They failed to protect citizens who were going about their lawful business. To say that they were useless would be an exaggeration: goodness knows what would have happened had they not been there. But they did not carry out their duty with alacrity, and the social media — videos, sound recordings, photographs — that helped to call the mob into being in the first place are now being used to hold the police to account for their passivity in enforcing the law.

The question arising from the episode is how far it was isolated … and how much was it a harbinger of things to come? Certainly, it gave me another lesson in how fragile public order is and how quickly it can break down. …  The Hopkins incident also demonstrates how weak is the attachment to freedom of speech and thought, especially among people so convinced of their own rectitude that they feel entitled — indeed, duty-bound — to silence others. …

As there, so here in America. And all over the West.

Theodore Dalrymple thinks that what happened in Lewes might be one of the early battles of a second Civil War in England, since violence begets violence.

One of the problems of this, apart from its sheer moral and intellectual idiocy, is that it will eventually call forth equal and opposite violence. Thus, the Lewes Speakers Festival would be an episode in the forthcoming English Civil War, the second of that name.

Civil war all over the West?

It is not impossible. It is not even unlikely.

Posted under Anarchy, Britain, Civil war, communism, Crime, Fascism, immigration, Islam, jihad, Leftism, Muslims, nazism, Race, United Kingdom, United States by Jillian Becker on Wednesday, March 14, 2018

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